Category: CDL

All About the ‘Move Over’ Law

Maryland’s ‘Move Over’ law has caused some buzz in the news as it is being expanded to protect more drivers from the dangers of being on the side of the road. Move over laws are important to take note of because it makes what is often a common courtesy into law. Changing lanes to avoid stranded or working vehicles can save lives. That is what the Maryland law aims to do by increasing the scope of protected vehicles from tow trucks, service vehicles, and emergency vehicles to any vehicle with their flashers on. Sometimes legal talk can be confusing, but in this post, we’ll talk about the ‘Move Over’ law and how you can avoid fines and keep others safe!

Moving on Over

All 50 states in the United States have move over laws that are enforced, though the exact vehicles protected varies. For Maryland, Governor Larry Hogan just signed a bill that makes the move over law applicable to any “disabled vehicle displaying hazard warning lights, road flares, or other caution signals or warning lights.” While it is called the ‘Move Over’ law, it does not mean that you must always move over as it is sometimes impossible. It does mean that you must slow down to a safe speed and possibly move over if you can, giving as much leeway to the disabled vehicles, emergency/service vehicles, or tow trucks.

What the Law Means for Drivers

Trucks are obviously much larger than civilian vehicles, which often makes fully moving over a challenge and lawmakers most certainly understand that. If you can’t move over, slow down as much as necessary and give room to the vehicle. Failing to move over can result in a fine of $500 in Maryland. All the other states enforce this law as well with varying fine amounts. 

The only change for drivers to watch out for is vehicles with their hazards or other warning signals and slowing down or moving over will suffice for abiding by the law. This is a law that makes sense and that everyone can get behind, because it only takes a few seconds to follow it and it will save countless lives. 

A Safer Road for All

Laws like the ‘Move Over’ law are instilled to keep both commercial, emergency, service, civilian vehicles, and their drivers safe from the hazards of the roads. Taking just a second to move over or slow down, giving space and ample warning to the people in the stalled vehicle can mean the difference between life and death. Taking the initiative to make a safer road space for all will decrease travel times and increase transport efficiency by reducing the slowdowns caused by wrecks.

Final Thoughts

Maryland has decided that the ‘Move Over’ law applies to all vehicles, which will help protect everyone from service workers to emergency responders and people with car troubles. This is a great step for saving lives! As always, staying alert and watching for stalled vehicles, or other traffic hazards, will make the roads more efficient and accessible! 

New Graduates: Getting Started in the Trucking Industry

Trucking is one of the world’s greatest industries. There are many benefits including competitive pay, travel opportunities, and opportunities to advance in the field. Becoming a driver is hard work and with a few years of experience, you will likely see that driving is very fulfilling financially and otherwise! It may seem like there are roadblocks to driving if you’re new to the career, but many companies will train you for free! So, if you’re in the market for a new career, we urge you to check out truck driving!

A Wonderful New Career

Truck driving is no longer just an old man’s industry. The media likes to portray the modern-day driver as being an older man. Though most drivers are older, there is an increasingly diverse community of drivers in the industry. Truck driving is not for everyone, but for those who enjoy traveling all over the country, providing real world solutions, and having time to think while on the job, trucking may be right for you! 

If you think you’re interested, doing some research is a great first step! There are many careers in the trucking industry, some of which don’t require driving. There are plenty of administrative positions available in larger companies. However, if you are starting out as a driver you also have options between regional and long-haul routes. Depending on which company you choose, you can be traveling along major highways across the United States or learning your local region inside and out while bringing goods to their final destinations. 

In-Demand Hires

It is important to remember when choosing a career that you choose one that is sustainable and will not go away any time soon. While some careers sound appealing, job security is becoming increasingly more important in the modern world. With trucking it is not likely that the industry will ever go away, as it has consistently seen increases in business since its establishment as an industry. Logistical transport of goods from suppliers to final locations is exactly what makes the United States economy run so efficiently and taking drivers out of the equation would be catastrophic.

Building a Lasting Career

As a truck driver, you know your work matters and makes a real difference in the lives of people across the nation. Even if you will never meet most of the people that you serve, they will be incredibly thankful for the cargo you bring to their locale. You will face challenges as a driver including being away from home, the dangers of the road, and possibly boredom from longer drives, but if you find the driving enjoyable you can create a very long and successful career out of it!

Final Thoughts

If you’re newly graduated and unsure of what you’d like to do for a career, truck driving may be a great opportunity for you to make some money, explore the world, and gain experience. You may just fall in love with America’s most important industry and find a lifelong fulfilling career. Do your research and stay curious, as a new grad you have a lot to offer to the world! 

Eating Healthy with the Seasons

As a truck driver, eating healthy on the road is not always easy. It can be difficult to prioritize healthy eating and prepping healthy meals can be a challenge. As a truck driver, you travel many miles that require long hours in the truck and multiple stops at gas stations. Due to this type of career, it can be hard to find food options that are both healthy and satisfying. 

Truck drivers know all too well how hard it is to get good, wholesome meals two to three times a day. However, there are options, and with a little extra effort, healthy meal prep can be the solution! It may seem impossible to prep healthy meals that include fresh, nutritious foods due to the long inconsistent hours, but planning ahead can save you from stress and headaches. 

Now that spring has arrived, there are many ways you can incorporate delicious, healthy in- season fruits and vegetables into your meals. A few different ways you can enjoy these foods are through salads, yogurt, soups, and sandwiches. Just add some fruit, such as blueberries or strawberries, to your yogurt or put cucumbers or radishes on a sandwich. 

By adding in-season fruits and vegetables, you are providing your body with many health benefits, including the following.

Mixed Berries and Fresh Fruits

Fresh fruits provide many health benefits that consist of a combination of vitamins, fiber, and antioxidants. Bananas are an excellent choice for drivers because they are high in potassium, which helps fight fatigue and leg cramps. Another great option is apples because they help boost your immune system. If you have a sweet tooth, mixed berries and fresh fruits are a great alternative to candy and other sweet treats. They will fulfill your cravings but help you stay away from the sugar crash that comes with a lot of snacks high in sugar. Most truck stops have a variety of fresh fruit options, so you’ll never run out! Just a few in-season fruits you are bound to find include:

  • Honeydew
  • Raspberries
  • Strawberries
  • Blueberries
  • Kiwi
  • Apricots 


Just like fresh fruits, vegetables are another excellent choice of food to keep on hand while traveling. They also provide great health benefits including high fiber content. High fiber foods will help you feel fuller longer and stop you from overeating. Incorporating leafy greens into your everyday meals will increase your focus on the road. They are a good source of Vitamin K, which prevents certain age-related conditions. Leafy greens also help decrease cholesterol and preserve your eyesight. A couple examples you could try would be broccoli salad or cucumber salad. Broccoli is rich in minerals, nutrients, and fiber. Cucumbers are low in calories and high in nutrients. Enjoy as many fresh salads as you’d like, but keep in mind to skip salad dressings with high sugar and fat. Instead, go for a vinaigrette or balsamic dressing with olive oil. Some in-season vegetables to keep on hand include:

  • Cucumbers
  • Carrots
  • Broccoli
  • Radishes
  • Turnips
  • Asparagus
  • Tomatoes
  • Bell peppers

Being a truck driver, driving long hours daily is not an easy career. There’s no room for added stress, such as making sure you eat healthy. By planning ahead and making sure you have a good stash of fresh fruits and vegetables, you can ensure your sedentary profession will not prevent you from being healthy. Not only do these food choices keep you healthy, but they also help you remain focused and energized for your long trips. 


Best Truck Stops Available

As a truck driver out on the road, there is one thing you need to help keep you going, and that’s a good truck stop. It is important for truck drivers to find a truck stop they can depend on and that provides amenities that help them with their needs. Sometimes it can be hard to find the best truck stop while on the road. When choosing a truck stop, you need to pick one based upon the amenities they provide, such as laundry services, showers, spacious parking, restaurant options, fuel prices, and how well-maintained it is. The following are a few of the best truck stops available to you while on the road. 

Love’s Travel Stops & Country Stores

Love’s is the nation’s number one travel stop network and has more than 540 locations in 41 states. You can count on Love’s to have spacious parking and friendly staff members, as well as light mechanical maintenance. Their repair trucks are furnished with state-of-the-art equipment and have a full range of roadside tools to fix your truck, even if you are in the middle of nowhere. Another bonus is they are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year! Love’s goes out of its way to ensure truck drivers and travelers have a clean, safe place to stop during their travels. 

As a part of Love’s truck care, they offer more than 400 total truck care locations nationwide. They take pride in making sure every truck driver’s needs are met, no matter where they are. By partnering with Speedco, Love’s can offer more truck care services than ever before, including:

  • Tires
  • Roadside assistance
  • Oil change and PM services
  • Light mechanical work
  • Retread

Pilot Flying J

Pilot Flying J has been providing services to travelers for 60 years. It is their mission to make sure drivers’ experience on the road is the best it can be. Pilot Flying J has a plethora of amenities that every truck driver can benefit from, including the following:

  • CAT Scales: Provides a reliable, accurate, and certified weight and can be found at most locations.
  • Public Laundry: Located at most locations with fast and efficient laundry equipment
  • ATM: Available 24 hours a day at every location
  • Idle Air: Allows drivers to turn off their diesel engines and APUs yet still enjoy heating, cooling, standard electric inside and outside their cabs, Satellite TV, Internet, and other home comforts. Idle Air service allows drivers to save money and get better sleep without the noise, vibrations, and exhaust fumes from idling. For a list of locations, visit
  • Showers and Restrooms: Recently upgraded shower facilities and bathrooms gives guests a relaxing experience with a quick turnover, so the wait for a freshly cleaned shower is limited. 
  • Game Rooms: Games rooms allow drivers entertainment and relaxation, something that is needed after long hours on the road. They are located at most locations and include the latest games. 

Need another reason Pilot Flying J is highly rated? They now offer parking reservations through Prime Parking. With Prime Parking, you can pay with a tap, park with points earned, have a guaranteed spot, park with ease, modify your reservation, and have easy pay options. 

Sapp Brothers

Sapp Brothers has been around for 50 years and has 17 travel centers across the country, mostly located in the Midwest and West. They provide 24-hour roadside assistance and have a full-service tire center. Some of the items they can assist you with are:

  • Full mechanical work
  • Jumpstart
  • Tires
  • Lights
  • Fuel delivery
  • Air Leaks
  • Brakes
  • Belts
  • Hoses
  • Electrical 

Sapp Brothers also pride themselves on having the cleanest restrooms and showers on the road. They have sinks that deliver hot water, towel dispensers and heaters that actually dry your hands, and some locations now offer bidets and heated toilet seats that have gotten rave reviews. Their showers give drivers a hotel-like experience and offer shower programs where drivers can earn shower credits!

Drivers can also find CAT Scales at 15 of their locations and their scales are guaranteed to be accurate. If it turns out the scales are wrong, SAPP Brothers will reimburse you for any fines you might accrue. Knowing that time is of the essence, Sapp Brothers strives to make truck drivers’ fueling experience efficient, so they can get back on the road or have time to rest. To do so, they provide bulk DEF at all their pumps, along with an automatic pump activation with the swipe of an approved fleet card. 

TA Travel Centers/Petro Truck Stops

TA Travel Centers and Petro Truck Stops have been in business for more than 40 years. They have been voted the best, most trusted brand in the truck stop industry year-in and year-out. There are more than 250 locations across the United States that are conveniently located off major highway interstate exits. They offer multiple amenities such as:

  • 24-hour full-service travel centers
  • Truck repair and maintenance services
  • Multiple food options including fast food, grab n’ go, and full-service restaurants
  • Hospital grade, clean showers
  • One-stop shopping to get groceries, snacks, electronics, maintenance supplies, clothing, and gifts
  • Preferred and reserved parking
  • Wi-Fi
  • CAT Scales
  • Laundry services with new machines, folding tables, and hanging racks, with multiple payment options

Every truck driver knows how hard it is to stay fit and healthy on the road. TA and Petro offer a StayFIT program that provides easy health and wellness options while giving drivers a place to stop for everything they need. There are onsite medical clinics that provide chiropractic services and DOT physicals. Exercise rooms, outdoor fitness stations, and activity centers are also available. 

When truck drivers stop for a bite to eat or to refuel, they need to feel at home and welcomed. The truck stops discussed above are only a few of the best out there that strive to make every guest comfortable and their time on the road worthwhile. Whether it is one of these you choose, or another one that has been recommended, know that the owners of these truck stops advocate for you and appreciate your hard work. 


Barking Up the Right Tree: Road Dogs

Dogs are the best friends of men and women alike. In all walks of life, most people’s wellbeing is greatly improved by their furry friends and the steadfast love they show. According to The Washington Post, over 68% of American households own one or more dogs. It probably doesn’t come as a surprise that so many people own dogs, but an incredible fact is that 40% of commercial drivers take their pets alongside them in their transport journeys, according to the New York Times!

The Ruff Ruff Road

It’s a well-known fact among drivers that the road can sometimes be rough. Whether it’s a long drive, being away from the family too long, or particularly distressing highway conditions, it can be a lot to deal with daily. Drivers cope with the stressors they face in several ways. Some listen to podcasts or audiobooks, some call their friends and family, others play road games with themselves or their partners, and some have found a unique way of staying entertained and having lovely company by bringing their pets along for the ride. 

Cute Companions

The cutest company that a driver can have is their wonderful pet. Pets are proven to have a relaxing effect on their owners, dogs especially. One example of a driver who has had wonderful experiences driving with her dogs is Diana Stolsworth, a driver from Texas who has driven with her pets almost since she started driving trucks. She has enjoyed every minute of driving with her pups and encourages others to do so, but she makes it clear that it is crucial to take safety precautions for your pets while on the road. Including lighted collars and harnesses to prevent injury or death in high traffic zones like truck stops.

What’s Up Dog?

This leads us to the requirements for taking a dog with you on the road. Much like taking another person with you, there are certain rules you’ve got to follow. Depending on your company, you may not be able to bring your pet along. If you are an individual driver or your company allows for it, some tips to remember are always bring more food for your pet than you think you’ll need, ensure you have things to entertain them with, take them on regular walks, provide water often, and always remember to have some fun. Many employed people don’t get to see their dogs 24/7 like you do, so this is a very special advantage to driving.

Final Thoughts

Pets are the better halves of their owners, with sweet spirits and a can-do attitude, your pet can be a great road companion. If you’re interested in bringing your furry friend along for the ride, you should talk to your employer or check the regulations that apply to you, and then bring your dog along for the ride. With your best friend by your side, the road is guaranteed to be a more interesting and adventurous place where you can make incredible memories with your fur baby!

What industries does the trucking industry serve?

Trucking is the thread that connects nearly all-American industries together. Weaving a web that networks supply to demand and production to distribution is what the trucking industry does best, making the United States a more connected and efficient place. Service is the mission of the trucking industry, whether it’s to serve other industries or the civilians that benefit from their proper and efficient function. It is well known that nearly everything in stores was once on a truck, but the trucking industry services many more industries than big box stores.

Service and Care

Ever since the global transportation system has existed (first on ships, horses, and carriages, then trains, trucks, and airplanes), it has filled a major economic need that exists in the niche between supply and demand which is transportation. In large amounts, and over great distances, goods are often hard to carry from point A to point B without the proper equipment. Agencies dedicated to transport play a major role in transitioning products to their points of sale or distribution.

The painstaking efforts that drivers put in to make sure that goods arrive safely are what make the trucking industry shine, and this care is greatly appreciated by all other industries served by trucking. Drivers are often underappreciated for the incredible work they do daily. They deserve high praise for carrying the American Economy and allowing our country to thrive.

Industries helping Industries

Drivers can work for a trucking company, themselves, or a specific industry other than general trucking, and their careers can range from long haul drives to regional transit. Each of these positions are important to the economy of the nation and individual industries. Some of the most common industries served by the trucking industry include, Transportation & Public Utilities, Wholesale & Retail Trade, Services, Manufacturing, Construction, Agriculture, and Mining, according to

The most prevalent industry that trucking helps directly is that related to Transportation and Public Utilities. Drivers with the most diverse set of impacts are those that work in the for-hire side of the industry, which takes jobs from many different businesses and organizations. Private drivers also have a huge impact making up over 45% of the total number of drivers in the United States. Private drivers are usually hired directly by the businesses they represent, while for-hire drivers often work for a larger trucking company or themselves.


There is a term in biology called ‘mutualism’, which is a fancy word for saying a relationship where both organisms benefit. The trucking industry exists in a mutualistic relationship with nearly every other industry in the United States. This mutually beneficial coexistence is what helps the country’s economy remain so strong, and it is why trucking is such an important industry in the survival and growth of the economy.

Final Thoughts

Trucking is an incredibly important industry for several reasons. It brings supplies to the people who need them, it helps other industries distribute their goods, and it connects the United States from coast to coast. Trucking is also making huge steps forward in becoming more environmentally friendly, which will help the economy by reducing fuel costs and creating less strain on other industries!

Choosing between different types of routes

There are pros and cons to each one, more peanuts, less caramel, so it may seem like an impossible choice since both are great options. While you might not like driving as much as candy bars, the difficulty of the decision remains. The benefits of choosing one route over another may be less clear-cut. The best way to decide is to weigh your options objectively to have a good understanding of the different route types available to you.

The Road Being Traveled

When driving, you likely aren’t looking for the road less traveled regardless of the type of route you choose, but that’s not something you have to worry about most of the time when choosing a route as there are many drivers on the road with similar routes that understand the dilemma you are facing now when choosing a specific mode of travel. As far as routes go, there are four major classifications, local, regional, long-haul, and dedicated. Drivers on all these routes are an incredibly crucial component in the proper transportation of goods from pickup to drop off, but there are different conditions and expectations for each route classification that may make one stand out as a better option for you. 

Map It Out

Most routes are classified by their distance from home base. For instance, local routes cover very specific areas where you will likely not venture far enough for overnights and be able to return home each day. Regional routes cover a larger distance and may have you travel in specific parts of the United States, like the East Coast or Midwest. Long Haul drivers experience the furthest traveling distance and can expect to go anywhere in the country, and possibly even to Mexico and Canada.

Dedicated routes are a little different as they can be many distances, though they are often local distances. These routes are determined by their regular hours and continued employment, as many routes can be one-time deals with a particular company. Dedicated routes work quite well for those seeking very stable employment and regular hours.

Finding Your Path

Choosing a route should be dependent on how you feel and what you think you’re capable of when driving. If you really enjoy traveling for long distances and are okay with being away from home for a while, regional or long-haul driving may be a great choice for you as it allows you to see an incredibly vast amount of the country. If you’re a bit more tethered to home and would like to be back in your own bed for the night, or have a family that requires your support, taking on a local route may be more beneficial for you.

Planning and Preparation

Weighing the pros and cons of routes is the best way to discern which option may be the right choice for you. As you consider driving different routes, think about which type would benefit you the most and cause the least amount of stress and the most gain for your time. Trucking is a diverse field with many different jobs available to suit almost anyone, so be sure to do your research and take on routes that are good choices for your well-being.

How Truckers Can Help Spot Human Trafficking

Human trafficking is modern-day slavery. Traffickers use force, fraud, or coercion to gain control over their victims and force them into labor or commercial sexual exploitation. They might use violence, manipulation, or false promises of high-paying jobs or intimate relationships to entice victims into trafficking situations. Traffickers seek out individuals who are vulnerable for different reasons such as psychological or emotional weakness, economic hardships, lack of a social safety net, natural disasters, or political instability. 

Every year millions of women, children, and men are trafficked worldwide. Trafficking occurs in any community and victims are of any age, race, gender, or nationality. It can happen in a variety of locations such as truck stops, restaurants, rest areas, hotels/motels, private homes, etc. Victims often refrain from seeking help due to language barriers, fear of their traffickers, and/or fear of law enforcement. The trauma victims endure can be so great that many do not see themselves as victims or ask for help. 

How to Spot Human Trafficking

Since traffickers often take advantage of the transportation system to move their victims across the country, truck drivers are at an advantage in seeing signs and making reports. They are the eyes and ears of our nation’s highways. They should try to be on the lookout for human trafficking, in particular sex trafficking, which often happens at truck stops. This usually occurs two ways:

  • Escort-like services: This typically occurs in the buyer’s truck or at a nearby motel. The victims normally solicit customers by using a CB radio, knocking on truck doors, or walking up and down the tarmac. 
  • Fake massage businesses: These typically have billboards or other ways of advertising along the highway or in the truck stops. 

Victims of both ways are always being moved to keep them from developing relationships or reaching out for help. 

There are common signs that commercial truck drivers can watch for if they think someone might be a victim of trafficking. These include:

  • An individual who is disoriented or does not know where they are
  • Someone who is bruised or has tattoos that look like branding or barcodes
  • An individual who appears out of place, is not carrying any luggage, or wearing clothes that are not appropriate for the weather or setting
  • A person who is not in control of their ID/passport
  • Restricted or controlled communication or is not allowed to speak for themselves
  • CB talk about “commercial company” or flashing lights indicating “buyer” location
  • Acknowledgement of a pimp and making a quota
  • A van or RV that appears out of place near trucks
  • A vehicle dropping someone off at a truck and picking them up 15-20 minutes later

How to Respond

If you suspect a trafficker or a victim of trafficking, or think something is wrong or out of place, trust your instincts and report it to the local law enforcement. Never confront a suspected trafficker or victim as this can make the situation more dangerous for you and the victim. You can also contact the National Human Trafficking Hotline at (888) 373-7888, or text HELP or INFO to BeFree at 233-733. This national hotline is available 24/7 and provides resources for victims and reporters. Callers do have the option of remaining anonymous. 

Managing Driver Fatigue

“Driver fatigue” is a common expression used by long-haul and commercial truckers. At some point during their career, every truck driver is bound to experience driver fatigue. Driver fatigue is caused by physical or mental exhaustion due to being on the road. Drivers who experience driver fatigue have a higher chance of getting into an accident because it can lead to slower reaction times and the decreased ability to assess situations quickly. Many factors can be the cause of driver fatigue including, lack of sleep and working long hours. It is a major issue and every driver needs to know how to stop it from happening. 

Every driver, including truck drivers, needs to be alert behind the wheel. Being alert not only keeps them safe, but everyone else around them, too. It is up to the driver to choose the best way for him or her to battle fatigue. Here are a few options to choose from.  

Get a Good Night’s Sleep Beforehand

To function at your best, it is recommended that adults get at least seven hours of sleep every night. This will help you stay alert and be as responsive as possible while driving. Getting an adequate amount of sleep will also help you to be mentally and physically ready for any potential incident. 

Keep a Healthy Diet

Maintaining a healthy diet can be difficult in general, but it can be even harder for long-haul and commercial drivers. That doesn’t mean you have to be discouraged because it can be done, but it will take determination. To maintain a healthy diet you should steer clear of fast food and choose healthier alternatives, such as packing and bringing food from home. Stay away from eating heavy meals because it takes a lot of energy to digest them. Eat lighter or smaller portions throughout the day and try snacks such as almonds and apples to keep you fuller longer. 

Take Breaks About Every 2 Hours

Taking breaks from the road every two hours will help you stay alert. It provides you with the chance to stretch, go for a walk, get some fresh air, and get a change of scenery. 

Take a Pre-Drive/Mid-Drive Nap

There will be times you might not get a good night’s sleep the night before you start your long drive. If that’s the case, try to make time to fit in a nap before you start your drive, even if it is only for an hour. If you do not have the time before, make sure you visit a rest stop to try to fit in a short nap. Trying to fight your fatigue can be dangerous. 

Limit Caffeine

Although caffeine can be helpful when consumed in moderation, it can lead to a “caffeine crash” causing you to be more tired than you were before. Therefore, enjoy a caffeinated beverage every so often because it can help, just do not overdo it. 

Stay Hydrated

Dehydration can lead to drowsiness and headaches. Staying hydrated is very important because water has natural properties that will help you feel awake. 

Adjust Your Environment

When it comes to fighting fatigue, there are many ways you can do it within the cab or tractor. These include keeping the temperature cool, repositioning your seat, rolling down the windows for fresh air, playing mental games, and listening to podcasts instead of music. 

Make Use of New Technology

The following are five new anti-fatigue technologies that are being utilized in the trucking industry.

  • Fatigue meters-uses service logs to predict fatigue levels by approximating your sleep pattern on actual duty periods and uses the approximation to predict fatigue
  • Wearables-includes wristwatches, eyeglasses, and other Fitbit-like devices
  • Anti-fatigue headwear-the use of smart hats with sensors on the forehead to identify head movement and measures brain waves for signs of fatigue. This information is then sent to a unit in the cab wirelessly
  • Smartphone tests-uses psychomotor vigilance task (PVT) which measures the cognitive alertness of truck drivers
  • Facial mapping-systems take images of the driver’s face to locate symptoms of fatigue including head nodding, gazing, drooping eyelids, yawning, and head orientation. 

Driver fatigue is not a matter that should be taken lightly. It is a significant issue and every truck driver should be aware of the ways to fight it. Find a way that works best for you and try something new. You might be surprised at what works and what doesn’t. Make it a priority to combat driver fatigue not only for your safety, but for everyone else out on the road. 

The Process of a Weigh Station

Stopping at a weigh station is inevitable when you are a professional truck driver. You might think this is an inconvenience, but weigh stations provide an important purpose in making sure that everyone on the road, including yourself, is safe. Knowing how a weigh station operates will allow you to prepare for the experience, and hopefully stop a small inconvenience from becoming a big one. 

What Happens at a Weigh Station?

One of the most important roles of a weigh station is to decide whether the truck is overloaded. Your truck might be assessed by its axle or the whole truck might be measured. Weigh stations will either have a rolling scale that allows you to keep your truck moving while it is being weighed, or a scale that requires you to stop. If it is determined that your truck is too heavy, you could be waylaid at the weigh station until arrangements are made for another truck to take the extra weight. 

Besides weighing your truck, it is possible that officials will check your electronic logging device (ELD) to make sure you are following the applicable hours-of-service laws. Officials could also complete an inspection of your truck’s equipment to make sure it is in safe working condition. Equipment that is subject to a safety inspection includes, but is not limited to: 

  • Brakes
  • Fuel tanks
  • Kingpin
  • Rims/wheels
  • Springs
  • Tires
  • Tubing/hose

Finally, officials could also check to ensure your truck is not leaking fluids such as antifreeze, oil, or fuel. If your truck fails the inspection, it could be taken off the road until the problem is adequately fixed. 

What is the Weigh Station Procedure?

As you are driving on the interstate, keep a lookout for signs that inform you of a weigh station coming up. These signs include information on whether it is open or closed. If it is closed, you do not need to stop. However, if it is open there might be a speed limit sign telling you the speed you need to be going upon your approach. 

If there are other trucks waiting in line, you will have to join the line and wait your turn. Signs and/or weigh station personnel will inform you of the instructions to follow. It is vital that you take note of the posted speed limit as you drive over the scale and the instructions for stopping and/or slowing. If you do not do so, it could cause unnecessary delays and inconvenience for everyone. 

After your truck is weighed, the next step is the inspection of your equipment and checking your ELD. If equipment is found to be missing or faulty, a more detailed inspection will occur. Problems with your log data can also result in major delays. However, if everything is in order the inspection and weighing should not last long.  To make sure your log stays accurate, officials at the weigh station will enter your DOT number into a computer system and complete a check of your safety rating. 

How to Make the Process Go Smoothly

The sensible thing to do is to perform an inspection yourself prior to hitting the road. Although it is always possible for problems to occur on the road, making sure your cargo weight is below the limit and everything is in order when you start out can stop delays later. Also, make sure you are courteous and professional while engaging with weigh station personnel. Being rude or argumentative will not make the process go any faster, but it can make the experience unpleasant for everyone. 

Whether you are a seasoned truck driver or just starting out, the thought of stopping at a weigh station can be overwhelming and stressful. If you have questions regarding weight stations, please contact the staff at Trucker Search toll-free at (888) 254-3712. We would be glad to answer any questions!